May 30

Five faculty members receive promotions at UST Law

Published on: Thursday, May 30, 2013

Five faculty members at the University of St. Thomas School of Law recently received promotions. Robert Delahunty, Nekima Levy-Pounds, Julie Oseid, and Jennifer Wright have been promoted to full professor. Ben Carpenter was promoted to associate professor.


Robert Delahunty

Delahunty, who primarily teaches Constitutional Law, International Law and Conflicts of Law, began his current employment with UST Law in 2004 after spending much of his career working for the U.S. Department of Justice. He spent most of his legal career at the Office of Legal Counsel, where he was made Special Counsel and a member of the Senior Executive Service in 1992. His work and writing at the Office of Legal Counsel focused on the constitutional law of foreign relations, Presidential war powers, public international law, treaties, and immigration law. Delahunty also served as Deputy General Counsel at the White House Office of Homeland Security from 2002-2003,   before his hire at UST Law.

In addition to his legal career in Washington D.C. Delahunty previously taught law at Columbus Law School at the Catholic University of America. He also taught philosophy at Oxford University in England, from which he obtained a B.A. with First Class honors in Classics in 1970 and a Bachelor of Philosophy degree in 1972. A New York native, Delahunty graduated summa cum laude from Columbia University in 1968. He received his J.D. from Harvard Law in 1983.

Dean Robert Vischer praised Delahunty for his prolific scholarship as well as his efforts in the classroom. “He is an amazingly prolific scholar whose work is published by the leading law reviews in the country, and he’s helping shape debates on presidential power and the laws of war,” Vischer said. “He also invests his time generously with our students, building relationships that last long past graduation.”


Nekima Levy-Pounds

Prof. Levy-Pounds, director of UST Law’s Community Justice Project (CJP), was hired at UST Law in 2003. As CJP Director, Levy-Pounds supervises law students on a variety of civil rights issues such as police misconduct and brutality; issues involving juveniles in the justice system and public education system; restorative justice for criminal defendants; collateral consequences of criminal convictions, and community education, with an overall goal of increasing access to justice for the under-served.

Levy-Pounds previously taught at University of Illinois College of Law, where she received her J.D.

In addition to her teaching and leadership role with the CJP, Levy-Pounds is an active contributor to the field of civil rights and criminal justice by serving as a consultant to local civil rights organizations and community groups, a commentator in local media, and a lecturer and speaker in national and international forums. Her scholarly interests include African-Americans and the law, the impact of the war on drugs on African-American children and families, the treatment of women in prisons, and intersecting issues of race, class, and the criminal justice system.  Levy-Pounds also focuses on juvenile justice issues, police and community relations, and the school to prison pipeline facing children of color.

Dean Vischer said Levy-Pounds’ work helps ensure that the law school’s mission has a transformative impact on members of the surrounding community whose needs are too often left unaddressed by academic institutions.

“Through the Community Justice Project, Nekima has leveraged our mission to make a difference far beyond the walls of the law school,” he said.


Julie Oseid

Oseid, has been a member of the faculty at UST Law since 2004 and has primarily taught Lawyering Skills I and II, which are part of the school’s required legal writing curriculum. Previous to her employment at UST Law, Oseid worked as an associate attorney specializing in business litigation, products liability and professional malpractice litigation at the Minneapolis-based law firm of Oppenheimer, Wolff & Donnelly. She also previously taught at the University of Minnesota Law School, where she received her J.D. Upon completion of her law school studies Oseid worked as judicial law clerk for the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Federal Appeals. Oseid is currently writing a series of articles about eloquent American Presidents. She identifies the President’s persuasive writing quality, studies his writing habits, and considers how modern lawyers can adopt those same habits to increase their persuasiveness. In 2009, she received the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Teaching.

“Julie consistently receives glowing reviews from her students, and it’s no mystery why -- always well prepared and approachable,” Vischer said. “She makes our students better advocates, and her scholarship has deepened the legal academy’s understanding of what goes into effective and memorable writing.”


Jennifer Wright

In addition to her faculty role, Prof. Wright directs the Elder Law Practice Group at UST Law, where she teaches and supervises law students who are aiding elderly clients in long-term care and financial abuse situations. Wright is also a member of the Governing Council of the Elder Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association, a section delegate to the MSBA Assembly, and a member of the Friends of the Skyway Senior Center Board. She received her J.D. from Stanford Law School.

After law school, Wright worked as an affiliated attorney with the Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County, founding and directing the Immigration Amnesty Project. She then worked for ten years as a staff attorney for Oregon Legal Services, specializing in elder law. She was the statewide elder law resource for Oregon Legal Services and presented many continuing legal education seminars on issues such as guardianship law, nursing home law, Medicaid and Medicare, advanced directives and end-of-life decision making, and ethics. During her time with Oregon Legal Services, Wright authored the Oregon Elder Abuse Prevention Act.

“Jennifer has built our elder law clinic into a force for good in the community and a key center of our school’s student formation work,” Vischer said. “She takes pedagogy seriously, and her students experience a fully integrative approach that brings together doctrine, skills, ethics, and the centrality of relationships.”


Ben Carpenter

Carpenter joined the UST faculty in 2010 after working as an Trust and Estates attorney for Minneapolis-based law firm Dorsey and Whitney. He primarily teaches Lawyering Skills I and II and upper level estates planning courses. He was the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Teaching during his second year of teaching. Carpenter received his J.D. from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University. After graduation, he began his legal experience in Atlanta, Ga., working for King & Spalding as a member of the International Construction and Procurement group.

Dean Vischer praised Carpenter for his talents in the classroom as well as his scholarship.

“In three short years, Ben has already made a name for himself in the classroom and in his scholarship – I think he’s destined to be a star in both venues.”



« Back to News Index